Designing drugs on the London Underground

When you think of drugs and the London Underground, you probably don’t get a completely wholesome, let alone scientific image. I am going to tell you how we can use systems such as the London Underground to improve the design of new drugs. The London Underground map is an example of a mathematical network, or … Read more Designing drugs on the London Underground

Creeping and crawling: how cells move

My PhD is in the field of cell biology. More specifically, I am trying to find out how cells ‘feel’ and respond to the environment around them. I am on a one man mission to prove that they are not just boring blobs, but actually fascinating molecular machines! One process that I work on is cell … Read more Creeping and crawling: how cells move

An acid trip

I would like to say that I have a good excuse for not posting anything for so long; however, I would be kidding myself. New Year’s resolution therefore, more blog posts! To start the year I am going to write about something everyone will have heard of, but may not know the details, pH. If … Read more An acid trip

I’ve got U(V) under my skin

The burning red sunburn fades into a ‘healthy’ brown. The pain has subsided and, in the knowledge that your complexion will spark jealousy in your co-workers upon your return, it all seems like it was worth it. But was it? To follow-up my previous post about how sun cream protects your skin from the Sun’s … Read more I’ve got U(V) under my skin


When I first had the idea to start a blog to communicate some aspects of science that I not only find fascinating, but think other people also would, DNA seemed like the obvious place to start. After all, it is the ‘building block of life’, the simple double helix that makes you unique, as well as the subject of an innumerable amount of nauseating metaphors from sports stars, proclaiming that winning is “in my DNA”.

On a famous night in 1953, 84 years after the forgotten Friedrich Miescher had discovered DNA, although he named it nuclein, James Watson and Francis Crick exclaimed to the punters of The Eagle pub in Cambridge that they had ‘solved the secret of life’, which turned out to be a double helix, not 42. Yet how many people can tell you what this simple acronym actually stands for? And why is it a double helix, and why is this important? This article will explain the basics about what makes up DNA and why it is arranged in this elegant fashion, forming what is one of the most beautiful and well recognised molecules in biology.

Read moreDNAmazing!